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Polish state controlled firms push back decision on shale joint venture project

WARSAW -- Five state controlled Polish companies said they have extended the deadline to February on a decision about the structure of its potential joint venture for exploration for shale gas in Poland.Natural gas utility Polska Grupa Energetyczna, Enea, and Tauron Polska Energia and copper miner KGHM Polska Miedz agreed in July to invest up to $526 million in cooperation on the Wejherowo concession in northern Poland.

They originally expected to decide details of their cooperation by December 30. They decided that if they fail to come up with decisions on the joint venture by February 4, each of them will have the right to pull out.

Exploration for shale gas is one of the Polish government' s top priorities. Poland' s shale gas and conventional reserves combined could cover 35-65 years of the country' s demand for natural gas, according to the Polish Geological Institute.

The country hopes shale gas will reduce its dependence on what it says is expensive natural gas from Russia.

Dow Jones Newswires



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